Originally Posted by Lip Man 1
Ironically it was Kenny who decided to change that 'team / small ball' philosophy when he traded Rowand for Thome (and that's not saying a thing against Jim the consumate professional)
And it's hard to know why he did that, given how successful the '05 team was. I realize, of course, that the Sox needed to find a replacement for Frank Thomas and Carl Everett, and Thome was excellent during his initial tour with the Sox, but his presence did represent a return to the pre-2005 philosophy that ultimately doomed the Sox in their pursuit of the Twins.
I don't believe that Rowand would have remained productive. He played well in Philadelphia, but was mediocre with the Giants, so dealing him when his value was at its peak was the right move. The Phillies were a logical trade partner because they needed to make room for Ryan Howard, who'd been stuck behind Thome at first base until 2005. Needless to say, that move worked out nicely for them, with Howard leading them to back-to-back World Series and helping them reach the postseason five consecutive seasons.
However, it's still puzzling that Williams so easily abandoned what worked so well, and even more confounding that he took no steps to assemble a similar roster at a later time. On the contrary, his solution to the Sox offensive woes revolved around the acquisitions of Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn. Junior was the best player in the game when he was at his best, but he was far, far removed from that pedestal by the time the Sox traded for him. As for Dunn, well, we've seen the results of his presence the past two seasons.